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Last Updated: 07. December 2017

Which Coffee Machine Do Customers Prefer? A Review of European vs North American Preferences

Which Coffee Machine to Buy In Terms of Lifecycle?

Every time somebody wants to buy a coffee machine, the question is: which coffee machine? Of course it depends on a lot of factors, but the rule is that everybody wants to make a reasonable investment. In this line of thoughts, there is no doubt that fully automatic coffee machines are the best choice.

These units have a life cycle of about 10 years, which makes them pretty reliable. However, the price of these coffee makers is relatively high and they are mainly used in restaurants, coffee shops and canteens. The classic espresso coffee machines can be considered as the second best choice, because they have a life cycle of about 7 years and the quality of the coffee beverages is unique. At the bottom of this list are placed the filter coffee makers, which are quite cheap, but the quality of the coffee drinks is not so good.


Current Trends in Europe and North America

There is a slight difference when we talk about US market and European market. Europeans spend an average of £100 on a standard coffee machine, while Americans spend around £30. Interestingly enough, in North America consumers buy around 29 million coffee machines per year, while the same number for Europeans corresponds to 14 million units. At the same time, the retail sales of coffee machines in Europe are twice higher than those in North America.

Coffee Machines 

This outstanding statistic comes to notice that in the old continent consumers are ready to pay more for better quality. As a matter of fact, this is not such a surprise having in mind that European countries consume 2 times more fresh coffee than Americans.

However,a new challenger has emerged in the last few years: the pod coffee machines. These compact coffee gadgets are gaining popularity lately. One of the main reasons for this is that they offer convenience: they are fast, user-friendly, affordable and can deliver premium espresso quality. It has to be mentioned that pod coffee machines are even preferred by many top restaurants, including Michelin-starred restaurants. However, what damages the brand equity of capsule and pod coffee machines is the amount of waste they produce. Nearly 90% of the pods are non-recyclable, meaning that millions of tons of unrecyclable waste is produced every year. Anyways, retail sales of capsule and pod coffee machines are increasing dramatically. From 2006 to 2015, the number of pod coffee units sold only in Europe increased almost 2 times.

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The coffee machine business is really dynamic and there is no doubt that the American market is much bigger and it has much more potential than the European. However, Europeans are most definitely ready to pay more for a proper espresso coffee machine, while the vast majority of Americans usually prefer a filter coffee machine, which is much cheaper, but cannot deliver the same top quality. Here is why the coffee machines retail value in Europe is much higher than in North America.